According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for nurses will grow by 7% over the next year. The average salary of nurses is only expected to grow, reaching $75,300 annually.
The profession earns that pay rate because it is among the most important in the world. More than any other healthcare professional, nurses serve as the primary point of contact for the patient and their family, caring for the whole person.
With such a great responsibility placed upon them, those who want to enter the nursing field must spend time doing proper research to choose the school that will teach them the trade. Fortunately, the great state of Georgia has many options for future nurses.
Unfortunately, one may get overwhelmed with so many potential schools. One must consider several factors when deciding upon a nursing school, including location, faculty, and concentration. One of the best resources for making that decision is the rankings published by the highly respected outlet, U.S. News & World Report.
This article can also help you make your decision. Although this list is based on the order as presented by U.S. News (in the case of a tie, the editorial team at College Gazette judges the tiebreaker), we go further to provide a full description for each entry, complete with all the information you need to make your first steps toward a financially and personally rewarding career in nursing.
10. Valdosta State University College of Nursing and Health Sciences (Valdosta, GA)
As part of the School of Health Services, the heart of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences at Valdosta State University is the Center for Exercise Medicine and Rehabilitation. In addition to housing a fitness and wellness center that all VSU students can enjoy, the center also allows nursing students to gain hands-on learning.
The Center serves a vital role in the various degree tracks that one can take in VSS Nursing. For those pursuing a Bachelor of Science in nursing, VSS offers both a traditional pathway, designed for freshmen and sophomores coming from high school or community college, and the adult student pathway, for working adults who need some online classes to accommodate their schedules.
With these excellent resources, VSS gives future nurses everything they need to enter the field, no matter what experience and needs they currently have.
9. Middle Georgia State University Department of Nursing (Macon, GA)
Located in Macon George, Middle Georgia State University’s Department of Nursing is dedicated to delivering evidence-based education in a liberal arts environment. To that end, MGS Nursing features both a remarkably diverse student body and a diverse faculty, with 43% of teachers in an ethnic minority. This stat stems from the school’s commitment to providing quality education to as many students as possible.
To that end, MGS Nursing offers both a traditional BSN and an online-focused RN to BSN degree for those who want to study while already working in the field. Likewise, the school features online versions of its MA degree, as well as a two-year associate’s degree.
MGS Nursing’s focus on diverse education ties into its demand for academic excellence. The school has a relatively open 50% acceptance rate, but it also has high expectations for grades. ASN students have an average 3.08 GPA, while BSN students average 3.47.
8. Kennesaw State University WellStar School of Nursing (Kennesaw, GA)
As part of the state-of-the-art WellStar College of Health and Human Services, the School of Nursing at Kennesaw State University is the most extensive such program in northern Georgia. The school strives to create academically disciplined and compassionate nurses who serve as leaders in their community. They achieve these goals with a program that features experienced faculty and numerous scholarship opportunities.
The KSU Nursing BSN degree has both traditional and accelerated tracks. In the former, students participate in in-class theory courses, eventually gaining hands-on practice in clinical roles. The accelerated program is designed for those who already hold degrees in other fields, allowing them to earn a BSN in four semesters.
These programs have earned KSU Nursing several high-profile recognitions. U.S. News & World Report puts the university among the top 75 most innovative schools in the nation and
BestOnlineColleges.com ranks it as the #2 best online college in Georgia.
7. Georgia Southern University School of Nursing (Statesboro, GA)
The School of Nursing at Georgia Southern University organizes itself around four primary paradigms: person, nursing, health, and environment. By foregrounding these paradigms, GSU Nursing calls upon its students to look at the relationship between the individual patient and the person, recognizing that their environment affects their health. With these principles in mind, GSU directs future nurses to use critical thinking, ethical principles, and technological advances to communicate and care for the whole humanity of their patients.
In addition, GSU Nursing offers students two study abroad opportunities. The Nursing and Service Learning in Costa Rica program sends students to the country for two weeks to employ theoretical techniques in a real-world scenario. For the Healthcare Study Abroad Program, students spend 11 days getting to know the country’s program to broaden their understanding of the profession.